Save Otago Polytechnic

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Millions of dollars have been taken out of the polytech sector over several years resulting in many institutions across the nation unable to sustain their current level of operation. As a result the government has proposed to merge 16 polytechnics into a single centralised national institute, creating a New Zealand Institute of Skills and Technology, including Otago Polytechnic.

This has the potential to devastate our Otago community and economy. This year,  around 7500 students are studying at Otago Polytechnic across all three campuses with more than 80 partnerships to international countries. Under this new proposal, all international students would be managed centrally, greatly affecting the enrollments and relationships shared by international students within the community. 

Otago Polytechnic consistently achieves above its weight and continues to be the leading polytechnic institute around the country. In fact, Otago Polytechnic is regarded as one of the most successful, creative and innovative polytechnics not just within the county but in many different places in the world. 

Otago Polytechnic reported a $425 million intake in 2017 and is regarded highly because of its economical contributions to the community. Otago Polytechnic has continually innovated new initiatives to adjust with the ever changing world and conserve resources (especially demonstrated by the sustainable practices within Otago Polytechnic). Otago Polytechnic grows with the changing climate of the environment and education sector and thrives both as a teaching facility and community. 

The economic climate of Dunedin will be forever damaged as a result of this merger. This proposal will also result in significant job losses of amazing capable staff with the expectation of multiple job losses overnight. This merger will directly effect every single person involved with Otago Polytechnic and individuals within the wider community. 

"The proposal to create a New Zealand Institute of Skills & Technology, bringing together our 16 public Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics (ITPs) as a single entity, threatens our autonomy as an institution and undermines the professionalism of teaching as we know it" (Otago Polytechnic).

It's highly concerning that the Education Minister Chris Hipkins and the wider educational government believe that students should learn under one entity and not have the creative abilities to learn within their own region and teaching facility. Every student that has chosen Otago Polytechnic as their place to study, has made this decision based on Otago Polytechnic's reputation, innovation and success. The government will not take away our ability to thrive as people and together as a community. 

This petition will be delivered to Education Minister Chris Hipkins. Please sign to prevent the loss of our polytechnic.